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Old 02-10-2007, 01:08 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Canada Jump-starting Prius

This is our first new car for 16 years, and though I work with computers and electronics and generally think all this stuff is cool, I'm a bit nervous about so much dependance on high-tech and special equipment. (My first car you could remove the plugs and wind
it out of a hole with the starter handle. The Prius, you can't even push it - it seems
if it breaks down 500 km from a dealer, you are looking at winching it onto a flatbed and driving it to one instead of getting some local mechanic to fix it good enough to get home)

Anyhow, I'm curious about what happens if the HV battery (the one that starts the
IC engine) goes flat. The 12V one you can jump from a motorcycle using the studs
under the hood, then at least you can get the doors open, but I see no way to charge the HV battery unless the engine's going, and no way to start the engine except from the HV battery. Kind of Catch-22. Jump-start from another Prius, and hope it's
the same generation (220V vs 500V) ? Courier in a new, charged, battery and take
2 hours swapping it ?
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Old 05-06-2007, 05:46 PM   #2 (permalink)
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any luck with this? help please

in your research, have you ever found out how to start a prius once the main battery is depleated? i have a 2002 prius (1st generation) and left the ignition key turned on a few days ago, without the car running ... i did not notice that i left this until the next day. now the car is completely dead and will not start. i thought that the problem may be the 12 volt battery was dead, so i charging the 12 volt battery. after charging the 12 volt battery overnight, i put the key in the ignition and turn it, and get nothing. nothing lights up. it's completely dead. i assume that it is the main 208v drive battery that is dead. i have no idea how to start the car. in your research, have you found out how to jump start a prius? if so, please share that information. if not, do you have any idea where i can learn how to do this? i am worried that if i do not get the batteries charged up soon that i will reduce the life of the battery or ruin the battery altogether. any suggestions?
george
2001 toyota prius
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Old 05-07-2007, 12:49 AM   #3 (permalink)
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If the HV battery is dead, you're SOL. The chances of you seeing a dead HV battery is very slim.

1. If you leave the car on, the car will cycle the engine on and off to charge the HV battery until it empties the fuel tank

2. If you crawl in traffic with the A/C on full blast and drain the battery, the engine will come on to recharge

3. If you use EV Drive mode, it'll cancel out of it when it reaches 2 bars on the MFD

4. If you run out of fuel and try to use the battery to get the station, the car will shut itself off at 1 bar or even no bars. You won't be able to restart


So ya, it's pretty hard to drain it.
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Old 05-07-2007, 01:18 AM   #4 (permalink)
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thanks for your input.
i just tested the 12v battery (while terminals connected) ... at 3 volts. i am not sure if it needs to be tested with one of the terminals disconnected. i will disconnect the negative tomorrow and see if it tests the same. if so, the problem is obvious ... likely that i just have to get a good charge on the 12v battery or get a new one ... which brings me to the next possible dilemma, what replacement battery do i choose if i wasted the battery completely. i am sure toyota dealership will sell me a replacement, but i bet it is costly. i heard a miata battery works nicely, but the terminals are of different size. i would like this to be an easy replacement if possible, so any input on a replacement battery including any terminal adapters is appreciated.
thanks again
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Old 05-07-2007, 02:50 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I never had any answers, but I was just curious not stuck.

At 3V, you really need to charge the 12V battery. I believe all the computers run on 12V; I think you should see the display etc. come on with a good charge in it even if your HV battery is really dead. You should be able to jump-start it from another vehicle, or motorbike - only problem is that a regular
jump cable clips are too big and you risk shorting something out in the fusebox; I bought a bike set for emergency use.
If the display comes up, you can check the 12V voltage in diagnostic mode (hold down INFO and
turn the tail lights on and off a few times, then select "vehicle signals" or some such)

Re. battery replacement, it's probably not worth trying to save money getting a Harley battery or whatever. It's shoehorned in pretty good, has
funny connectors and a vent pipe - http://andrew.triumf.ca/andrew/prius/12battery2.jpg But maybe you can find a compatible OEM battery from a specialist store.

Last edited by adaviel; 05-07-2007 at 03:00 PM.
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